Biography : Threshold (UK)
Formed in the South of England in 1988, Threshold released four highly acclaimed studio albums in the nineties before signing to Inside Out Music in 2000. The band"s latest album "Critical Mass" is the second successive studio release by Threshold to be hailed as album of the month by Rock Hard Magazine in Germany. The album was supported by tour dates in Europe and America.
Threshold originally formed in Surrey (England) during the winter of 1988, The band spent four years writing and performing as a five-piece band before signing their first record deal in 1992. The original Threshold line-up consisted of long-time members Karl Groom (guitar), Nick Midson (guitar), and Jon Jeary (vocals), as well as Tony Grinham (drums) and Ian Bennett (bass). After various changes, Damian Wilson eventually joined as vocalist with Jeary assuming the role of bassist.
In the summer of 1992 Threshold signed to the independent UK record label GEP Records. Richard West was brought in to add keyboards to the album after touring with Karl in the progressive rock band Shadowland, and the debut album Wounded Land was released in 1993. The album earned rave reviews across Europe and Japan where it was also released on the Zero label. Threshold"s debut European tour followed in 1994 co-headlining with Norwegian metallers Conception, with Wilson replaced by new front man Glynn Morgan. An important open air festival in Belgium closed the tour where Threshold shared the stage with Whitesnake and Paradise Lost.
The second CD Psychedelicatessen followed in 1994, with drummer Nick Harradence replacing Grinham who left the band after the tour. Nick had already performed with other members of Threshold in both Shadowland and Mercy Train, and stayed with the band until a permanent replacement was found in Jay Micciche. Psychedelicatessen was heavier in its approach yet still with a progressive edge, the album received another succession of great reviews and the Dutch magazine Aardschock hailed it as their album of the month. To promote the new album, the band recorded a video for the track Innocent and toured Europe with US band Psychotic Waltz. A mini live album called Livedelica was released and further dates in Europe, this time with Dream Theater, helped to strengthen the band"s already growing fan base.
In 1996 Morgan and Micciche left to form their own band Mindfeed, so original vocalist Damian Wilson returned to Threshold with new drummer Mark Heaney. The following year saw the release of the band"s third studio album Extinct Instinct, which received the album of the month award in Germany"s Rock Hard magazine. A European tour with US progressive rock band Enchant followed, with Johanne James filling in for Heaney who was busy with other commitments.
In 1998 ex-Sargant Fury vocalist Mac was brought in to replace Wilson who had left the band for theatre work, and the band"s fourth studio album Clone was recorded. Clone earned the band new respect both in Europe and the US, being hailed as a classic by Germany"s Rock Hard magazine and earning 10/10 in the US publication Metal & Hardrock Area. With the final departure of drummer Heaney shortly after the recording, Johanne James was finally confirmed as a full-time band member. Clone was taken on the road across Europe early in 1999 with support bands Eldritch and Pain of Salvation, culminating in an appearance at Wacken Open Air (Germany) where Mac was voted the best frontman of the festival. A fan club CD of remixes and rarities called Decadent was released to coincide with the tour.
With Threshold now confident of a line-up that could carry them successfully into the new millennium, the band returned to the studio in 2000 to record their fifth studio album Hypothetical, consolidating the cohesion formed between the band members during the Clone tour. The band also moved to the highly respected Inside Out label, allowing them the opportunity of high profile releases in both Europe and the US. A successful European tour followed in the Autumn of 2001 supported by Ark, and the last night of the show was recorded for a second fan club CD called Concert in Paris.
2002 brought a new studio album from Threshold called Critical Mass, which was hailed as album of the month both by Rock Hard (Germany) and Aardschok (Holland). The release was supported by a number of tour dates and festival performances including Bloodstock (UK) and ProgPower (Europe and USA). Critical Mass brought long awaited chart success to the band, reaching the German Top 100 and spending three months in the Rock and Metal chart. As a result Critical Mass has become the band"s most successful album to date.
2003 looks like another busy year for the band, with an acoustic fan club album, more European live dates and a DVD / double live album scheduled for recording in Holland.